Psychedelic Photoshoot on the Farm

Photos by Tom Sandelands

Connecting with our fans is just one more perk of leading a rockin roll senior ensemble.  The interesting characters, the talent, the stories and kindness keep us all motivated to bring our inspirational message to the masses. We are continually trying to find ways to connect with fans and an event that continues to be super successful each year is the Cast Party.

This is a  hot ticket event and can only be won through a drawing at our annual June show at the Bloomington Center for the Arts. Last summer 16 lucky winners joined the rowdy A&K cast & crew for a night on the town.

Cast Party Drawing Winners with 91 year old cast member, Catherine, in the mix. Roseanne-Far left, Michael and Jason – Far right. Plus lots of other super fun people in between!

Bunny’s was the place to be – good food and music and the joint felt an electric vibe. Each table was filled including a noisy bunch of sharply dressed black, white and red dressed seniors in the VIP lounge. Alive & Kickin welcomed our guests, shared good stories and had a night to remember.

One of our winners, “Superfan Roseanne from Cologne”, said “I think I was supposed to be there that night. I was so honored to hang out and get to know the cast. It really helped me opened up my quiet life to a group of people filled with joy.”

After much laughter and a few slices of pizza later, a connection was made.  Alive & Kickin was getting set to do a photoshoot and needed a space. “How do you feel about chickens?” Roseanne asked, “Love them,” Michael replied.

Actual Roseanne Chickens

As Roseanne proceeded to describe her fantastic rolling landscape complete with wooded walking trails, overlooking beautiful Beven’s Creek, we knew her farm could be a perfect location for us. The location ended up to be even better setting in real life. In the meantime, the rest of the team worked on the details – gathering costumes, organizing rides for the cast, craft services and more…then we were set for our adventure.

Tom in his natural habitat.

As a side note, part of the success of organization comes from the professional and business community who go out of their way to donate their time and talents. They all tell us they do it to show to the world that seniors have something to say and that their voice matters. It’s inspirational and humbling to say the least. We will let you know more about these amazing people in weeks to come. For now, back to the story…

Hoffman/Rein Family

Belts and shoes and bellbottoms galore!

Nearly an hour south of the cities, we arrived on the farm on a crisp autumn Saturday and got right to work.  Roseanne welcomed us into her entire home plus the 60 expansive acres, complete with barn, chicken coop, Isa the dog, and a super cool 1960’s motorcycle. Our motley cast and crew arrive with 7 costume bins, three make-up bags, thermoses filled with coffee and a first aid kit, “Just in case”.

Michael works with each cast member to ensure the costumes are perfect.

The day unfolded like a well oiled machine as we had worked to have all the details laid out ahead of time. (This is especially important when your cast has mobility challenges.)

We left some room for creative expression and ideas from the team and found ourselves in pathways, sitting on boulders, holding chickens and laughing by the fire.  “I came outside to let everyone know lunch was ready and found 9 senior citizens laying on the ground in the middle of my sunflower patch,” said Roseanne. 

“You never know with Michael what’s going to happen!”

Tom and Jeffrey were the masterminds putting together the shot at the last stop in the day and it turned out to be a favorite amongst the many shots. Ladders and laughter and more.  It ended with Michael saying, “Who’s going to help Darrel up?” Good times.

Photoshoots are labor intensive and costly but we believe it’s worth it for a few reasons. One, we couldn’t resist once we saw what our friend, Rich (another angel we will tell you about later) had put together for the costumes. Second, it’s hard to capture in words what a moving and surprising experience the show is for audience members. We tried to capture this through visual expression this year. Not to mention…how can you resist an outing to the farm!

Thanks for reading about our adventure. Our next one is coming up in May. Also, we’d love to hear from you – any time and about any thing…Seniors Rock and we want to hear what you have to say!

For more behind the scenes shots follow us on Facebook.

To purchase tickets to the June show, please click here or call 952-563-8575

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